Small developers have increased the size of new site requirements, rising threefold in a year, a new survey has revealed.

The Real Developer 2021 index asked 50 residential developers their plans for new site acquisitions for the year. Respondents reported an uptick in site capacity, rising from nine homes in 2020 to 28 homes for 2021.

Alex Harrington-Griffin, chief executive at TrustedLand, said: “It shows that beyond the known struggles of planning policy, that actually experienced firms are prepared to push bigger schemes through the process. This should make room on smaller sites for new entrants and micro operators, which is what we need to keep the ecosystem going.”

Nick Cuff, chief commercial director at Pocket Living, added: “Resilience is crucial when responding to the challenges the pandemic has presented us with, and flexibility has been just as important to ensure quality is delivered across all the development disciplines at Pocket.”

Last year, Pocket Living achieved consent for its largest scheme to date, with 196 homes at Osier Way in Waltham Forest (pictured).

The findings come amid ongoing efforts from the government to improve the housing market for SME developers, with changes to the planning system and Homes England procurements dedicating land to smaller companies.